US: Foreclosures Drop to 36 Month Low

US Real EstateThe number of U.S. homes in some stage of foreclosure fell last month to a 36-month low, as lenders delayed taking action against homeowners amid heightened scrutiny over banks’ handling of home repossessions.

Foreclosure-related notices sent to homeowners in February tumbled 14 percent from January and 27 percent versus the same month last year, foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac Inc. said Thursday. Initial default notices, scheduled foreclosure auctions and homes repossessed by lenders all posted declines in February.

While severe winter weather was likely a contributing factor, the sharp drop-off in foreclosure-related notices was primarily due to lenders taking a more measured approach to their foreclosure processes since the industry came under fire last year.

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